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Creating Basic Illustrations Using Adobe Illustrator

Class Code


Class Description

Effective immediately in response to COVID-19, most Technology Training classes will be delivered online until further notice.

In advance of each session, Tech Training will provide you with a Zoom link to your class, along with any required class materials.


This workshop will show you how to use the basic shape, shape-building, pen, and pencil tools in Adobe Illustrator to create custom illustrations and character designs.

Prerequisites: None. 
Requirements: Computer with latest version of Adobe Illustrator installed

By the end of this class, you would have had the opportunity to orient yourself to the essential drawing tools in Adobe Illustrator. Using skills gained, you will create your digital art scene and characters. You can then integrate your scenes and characters into messaging and communication to add personalized whimsy and flair. 

Learning Objectives

During this course, learners will have the opportunity to:

  • Successfully navigate the Illustrator interface to set up a personalized illustration workspace
  • Implement shape and shape building tools in Illustrator to create a background scene
  • Use the pen, pencil, and brush tools in Illustrator to create a custom character

Topics Covered

Session 1:

  • Illustrator tool and interface orientation
  • Creating custom workspaces
  • Drawing basic shapes
  • Breaking complex objects into simpler shapes
  • Using the shape building tool
  • Pattern tool overview and demo in Illustrator
  • Guided practice time

Session 2:

  • Review from Session 1
  • Pen, Pencil, and Brush tools
  • Character drawing demo
  • Considerations for combining characters and scenes
  • Guided practice time

University IT Technology Training classes are only available to Stanford University staff, faculty, students and Stanford Hospitals & Clinics employees. A valid SUNet ID is needed in order to enroll in a class.